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Mayfield criticizes Kingsbury in interview with ESPN.com

Former Tech QB says he had 'no communication' with coach

Posted: January 9, 2014 - 5:05pm  |  Updated: January 10, 2014 - 1:06am
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Former Texas Tech quarterback Baker Mayfield has enrolled at Oklahoma. (Stephen Spillman)  Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Former Texas Tech quarterback Baker Mayfield has enrolled at Oklahoma. (Stephen Spillman)
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Former Texas Tech quarterback Baker Mayfield told ESPN.com he had “no communication” with Red Raiders coach Kliff Kingsbury for much of the 2013 season and thought he’d played well enough to keep the starting job when healthy.

Mayfield said he also was told he would not get a scholarship until the fall of 2014 despite his starting part-time as a freshman walk-on.

Those are the main reasons, he said, why he left the program at the end of the regular season to seek a transfer.

In a question-and-answer published Thursday. Mayfield told ESPN.com Big 12 reporter Jake Trotter a lot of factors over time played into his decision.

“When I got hurt (week 5 at Kansas), there was no communication between me and my coach (Kingsbury),” Mayfield told Trotter. “When I got healthy, I didn’t know why I wasn’t playing right away. At that time, we were losing a couple games in a row. I was still clueless as to why I wasn’t playing. That was really frustrating for me because I started the first five games and we won.

“So, I just didn’t really know exactly what he was thinking or what the situation was,” Mayfield went on. “So that happened. And then going from a week-to-week basis not knowing whether I was going to play or not and how short the leash would be if I had an average half, how quickly I would be pulled or anything like that. It was making me uncomfortable, and I just didn’t want to be there anymore.

“I loved Lubbock and I loved my teammates. But going through that and then them tell me they’re still working on a scholarship for next fall, and I wouldn’t have one for this semester coming up. It was all that.”

Kingsbury said in December that Mayfield was going to be placed on scholarship, but he did not specify when.

A Tech spokesman said Kingsbury had no comment on Thursday after the interview was published.

The Red Raiders went 8-5 in 2013 with Mayfield starting the first five games, Davis Webb the next five and Mayfield the final two in the regular season. Webb then was the offensive MVP of the Holiday Bowl, throwing for four first-half touchdowns in a 37-23 victory against Arizona State.

Mayfield’s last start came in a 41-16 loss at Texas in the regular-season finale. He played the first 12 offensive series and led the Red Raiders to only a field goal while being sacked seven times. Still, he told Trotter he wasn’t happy to be splitting second-team snaps in practice the next week.

“Michael (Brewer) was going first,” Mayfield said. “I don’t know if he (Kingsbury) did that by age, but there was no explanation for why he was doing it. Right when we started our first bowl practice, right before the practice, he (Kingsbury) said it was a straight-up competition and that was how they were going to determine the starting quarterback. I didn’t think that was really fair.

“I’m not one to be afraid of competition at all because I’ve gone through that my whole life at Lake Travis (High School), too, and when I got to Tech. But I didn’t think that was fair because I had done my job when I had gotten the opportunity. I mean, I thought I needed more of a chance, and I wasn’t getting it. And they were splitting the reps equally, so that was the last straw.”

Mayfield had ball-security issues all season, fumbling nine times though Tech recovered seven. In back-to-back November games against Kansas State and Baylor, he fumbled five times, lost two and threw three interceptions, one returned for a touchdown.

Mayfield has enrolled at Oklahoma, hoping to join the team as a walk-on. However, Tech denied Mayfield permission to contact any Big 12 schools.

Mayfield also faces a Big 12 rule that docks a year’s eligibility from any player transferring within the conference.

Mayfield is appealing both, hoping to be eligible immediately, on the grounds that he paid his own way at Tech and the Red Raiders’ recruiting efforts toward him were negligible.

Mayfield said in the ESPN.com interview Kingsbury was “shocked” at his decision to leave.

“(H)e was saying how he had been behind me the whole time,” Mayfield told Trotter. “I had no idea because of the miscommunication and the lack of communication, really. And not knowing what he was thinking. I mean, if you gave me another chance to go through it again, I still wouldn’t think he was behind me, and I was his guy the whole time.

“I know he did give me the opportunity to start in the first place, and I’m thankful for that. I worked my butt off to get there, and I thank for him for taking a chance on me — starting a walk-on quarterback. But after that, when he was rotating us, there was no explanation.”

Once Brewer returned from a back injury he suffered in the summer, the starting quraterback — Mayfield, Webb or Brewer — became a weekly question.

When the Red Raiders arrived in San Diego for the Holiday Bowl, Kingsbury implied he might have been better off having to prepare only Webb and Brewer.

“They’ve both used the reps to get a lot better,” Kingsbury said on Christmas Day, “so it may have been a blessing in disguise.”

Webb and Mayfield both finished the regular season with 2,315 passing yards, and Mayfield was named the Big 12 offensive freshman of the year on the day he left the team.

Webb wound up passing for 2,718 yards and 20 touchdowns. Both freshmen had nine interceptions.

Mayfield made other incendiary comments in the ESPN.com interview when discussing his transfer. He said Oklahoma is “just a better academic opportunity” and “just a better school” than Tech.

He also turned on TCU, one of his favorites coming out of high school. Mayfield reportedly was on the Horned Frogs’ recruiting board, but was never offered a scholarship.

“Oklahoma and TCU were my first two options coming out of high school,” Mayfield said. “That’s where I wanted to go. And I wasn’t going to give TCU another chance after they basically screwed my whole recruiting over from the start.”



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coach k

makes 1.8 million a year. He doesn't need us to defend him and pick on a kid. Here are some more salaries for you enjoyment: link: http://espn.go.com/blog/big12/post/_/id/75400/breaking-down-big-12-coaching-salaries

All of these men are overpaid martinets. Very hard to take their side. But those salaries are very real world. Cure for cancer, nah, invented a super battery, nah, just coached football.


Mayfield is a terrible QB

Maybe he needs to go back and watch his performances against Texas and Kansas State.

There is a reason Kliff didn't name Baker the starter for the bowl; he got worse with each passing week during the regular season. In watching the Texas game it's clear why Baker was a walk-on to begin with.

Baker's sense of entitlement is beyond belief.



Ditto Lucky and Trey. Looks like we've been dealng with a brat. As i saw on this site some time back...Don't let the door hit ya, where the good Lord split ya.

Later Baker. Have fun competing with 6 others for a spot at QB. Mygues is you've played your last down at QB in D-1.



It appears to me that there are several factors affecting Mayfiueld and his decisions:

1. It is very hard to stay grounded when you start the season the way he did.

2. He had some advice from outsiders (Probably a helicopter dad) who boosted his ego more than it already was.

3. He made the mistake of listening to the outside advice.

It is a shame that he did not stay here and work on his future. I do not think he will do well at OU because of the stiff competition with players already proven there and he still has to get NCAA permission to play next year.

I cannot see Mayfield coming up with this plan himself without some input from somebody else.


Baker Mayfield criticizing Coach Kingsbury

Baker says in the article that he wanted to attend Texas Christian University or Oklahoma University. Baker did you take the wrong exit when you wound up in Lubbock? Baker if you really wanted to know what was on Coach Kingsbury's mind all you had to do is ASK QUESTIONS!!!!--By the way I believe O.U. Has some good young quarterbacks...Wish you the best....



actions rhyme with cushy!


I was never a fan

He doesn't know why he wasn't playing? I guess his dominating performances against SMU, Stephen F. Austin and one lonely start against the always dominating KU team really put him over the mark.

He got his feelings hurt when coach wasn't still thinking about him and giving him all the snaps. The kid was terrible to watch. He would move the ball for one series. His pocket presence was a joke. His arm was an embarrassment. Oh, and his so called speed against descent teams was terrible.

Webb and Brewer are great! Mayfield is out to get back at Tech after they put on a great performance after the Bowl game. Tech is riding high, and Mayfield is out to rain on their parade.


Coaches Pay

@ Bornler Your right, I don't understand why they pay football coaches so much or while we are on it, any college sports coaches. It's not like they have anything to do with the money coming in to the university, be it ticket sales, donations, sponsorships, ect. Also I'm sure all of the businesses in Lubbock would rather have lower paid coaches that don't generate any excitment on game weekend. That way not as many people would come in to town and they won't be as busy.

For those of you that don't understand, this is sarcasm.



I remember Guy Bailey saying that with the new Big 12 TV contract, maybe Tech would not need to spend the $2,000,000.00 a year to make up for the deficit in the football program.

Don't give me this BS about how football pays for itself.



That was under the old TV contract. The new contract is for 13 years at $2.6 billion. Each school gets about $22 million per year. I hope that helps it pay for itself now.




Silence Has Its Virtues

If any person influenced Mayfield to speak out, and perhaps ESPN wanted to cultivate a fresh controversy, Mayfield was mislead. This interview will come back to haunt him. He should have known that silence has it own reward.

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